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SARAYE EHSAN, THE SANCTUARY: WHERE PAIN MEETS HOPE by Dr. Farzaneh Haratyan

SARAYE EHSAN, THE SANCTUARY

WHERE PAIN MEETS HOPE

 

In the heart of Tehran, south of Kahrizak,

Nestled is Saraye Ehsan, a sanctuary, a mental retreat,

A dwelling for 500 five hundred souls, lost yet found in their minds,

Institutionalized for countless moons, yet throbbing with life’s beat.

 

Once a tempest brewed, struck their spirits, their souls,

Pain was magnified, birthing an obsession, a persistent beast.

With the extension of agony, joy drained away, replaced by torment,

Self-inflicted wounds, harm to others, the insanity feast.

Chained to their bare beds, they are labelled, confined.

In the mental hospital, Saraye Ehsan, the sanctuary, they’re ordained.

 

Yet, in the same adverse life storms, some brave souls grasp hope’s rope,

Climb the darkened abyss, ascend to the lightened acmes.

Stitch their torn pieces, mend their fragmented selves,

Pain is captured, detained, held at bay, it seems,

Healing rains down, washing the heart’s scars and lesions,

A balm to the wounds, a salve to the dreams.

 

The sane taste life’s bittersweet syrup, a paradoxical treat,

See the positive woven in the negative threads, a feat!

Mental surgery for the tattered, amending the shattered,

She rises a day later, stronger than ever, a rebirth, a repeat.

 

Off to the mental hospital, Saraye Ehsan, the mental sanctuary,

With my master students, armed with amity, empathy, compassion,

We thought of a visit, sought to bring love and sense of belonging,

A mission of humanity, a journey of sympathy.


 

Yet it went the other way round, the tables turned,

They embraced us, sincere, earnest, unfeigned.

We were the ones who felt loved, cherished, blessed.

Monumental moments of profound worth, lesson gained.

We stored in the vaults of our minds, a treasure chest,

We gained much more than we gave, a truth ascertained,

In farewell, a treasure of experiences, a heartfelt fest.



Dr. Farzaneh Haratyan is currently serving as an Associate Professor at the prestigious Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) in India. This position follows her tenure as an Associate Professor at various universities in China (Hunan, Jiangsu, Suzhou) for four years, and a fifteen-year tenure as an Assistant Professor at IAU in Iran.


Her educational journey is a testament to her commitment, dedication, and passion for learning. She has earned her first PhD in English Literature, her first Master’s degree in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL), her second Master’s degree in General Psychology, and has completed coursework for her second doctorate in General Psychology. Her research interests are an intriguing blend of literature and psychology. She is engrossed in the application of psychological theories in literary analysis and the therapeutic use of literature, such as in poetry therapy. At present, she is delving into the practices of positive psychology, Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT), emotion regulation (ER), and poetry therapy. Her academic pursuits, publications, speeches, and lectures in these areas are poised to make contributions to both the literary and psychological fields. She earned the title of “Distinguished Professor” in China in 2023 and the title of “Outstanding Educator” in India in 2024.

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